Uranium Spot Prices Fall Amid Weak Investor Demand, Ux Says

Uranium spot prices fell 2.8 percent amid weak demand as traders of the nuclear fuel entered the holiday season, Ux Consulting Co. said.

Uranium-oxide concentrate for immediate delivery was at $52.75 a pound in the four days through June 30, Ux said in an e-mailed report today. That’s based on the most competitive offer tracked by the Roswell, Georgia-based company. Prices from this week were unavailable due to the U.S. holiday season, it said.

The spot price for the nuclear fuel, which has declined 21 percent since the week before a March 11 earthquake and tsunami damaged Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Dai-Ichi power station, fell $4.75 in June.

“Demand has been fairly weak, although the aggressive pricing did spark some activity last week and several transactions were booked,” Ux said. “A few buyers that were not able to catch enough material as transactions fell below the $52 level are now bidding at $52 with hopes of securing additional material at these lower price levels.”

Nuclear-power utilities buy the bulk of their uranium for processing into fuel from mining companies, with the contracts mostly extending beyond 12 months. The market for immediate delivery, or spot market, allows trading for delivery within a year and includes financial investors. The U.S. government also periodically conducts auctions to reduce stocks.

“As we are in the midst of a holiday week and into the vacation season, activity may be limited this week as well, although low and now rising prices may spur some buying interest,” Ux said.